Aston Villa sign Forest defender Matty Cash


London (AFP)

Aston Villa have signed Nottingham Forest defender Matty Cash in a deal worth a reported £16 million ($21 million).

Cash agreed a five-year contract with Villa, who narrowly escaped relegation from the Premier League last season.

Sheffield United and West Ham also reportedly made bids for the right-back.

"We are delighted to welcome Matty to Villa and believe we have secured one of England's brightest young prospects," said Villa manager Dean Smith.

"He has an excellent playing record for a young player and we believe he will settle in easily and continue his rapid development into a top full-back."

The 23-year-old made 141 appearances in six years with second-tier Forest and believes the time is right to step up to the Premier League.

"My agent rang me and said that Villa were interested, and immediately it was the place I wanted to come to," Cash said.

"I said 'don't even worry about anywhere else, I want to come here and play'.

"It's been a crazy journey from the age of 17, getting released at Wycombe Wanderers to kicking on.

"Signing for Villa is a huge moment, and I want to thank everyone who's supported me through this process."